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Rainbow Boa Won't Eat

Discussion in 'Rainbow Boas' started by Benn-bmx, Sep 13, 2008.

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  1. Benn-bmx

    Benn-bmx Banned User

    I have had my 4 1/2 foot long columbian rainbow boa 5 weeks now and she has only eaten once. She is in a 6ft by 2ft by 2ft viv and the temps are between 80-85 during the day and drop down to around 75 at night. She just is not interested in the food at all. Any suggestions?
     
  2. mshrmheadcharge

    mshrmheadcharge Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

    Is she in a high traffic area? How much do you handle her and how often have you attempted feeding? What size prey are you trying to feed her?
     
  3. Benn-bmx

    Benn-bmx Banned User

    I only handle her once a week and only the off feed week as she gets fed 1 adult mouse once every 2 weeks. She is in my bedroom but nobody goes in there apart from me either when I go to bed or get up in the morning.
     
  4. BlackJack

    BlackJack Subscribed User Premium Member

    Try not to worry too much. I've had to learn that snakes eat and fast on their own schedules.
    Has she lost any weight? It's a good idea to keep records. We weigh our snakes after every defecation. This is an important health indicator. If she's not losing any weight, just try again in a week or so.
    Some snakes are particular about when and in what conditions they like to eat. My BP likes to eat at night, the room has to be dark, I put his plastic feeding box on a heat pad for a while and defrost his rat. When the box is warm, I put him inside, sometimes with his hide box and leave him in there with the lid closed in the dark for about 10 minutes. Then I bring in the pan of hot water with the defrosted (and stinky) rat, and I blow dry the rat next to his feed box so he can smell it. When it is nice and hot, I open the box and offer it to him with tongs. Sometimes he snaps it right up. Other times he ignores it. The advantage of F/T, I can leave the dead rat in the box with him (I put it on the side of the box that the heat pad is under so it stays warm.) Then I leave him in the dark to think about it. Usually after an hour or two, the rat is gone. If not, he's just not hungry and I try again about a week to 10 days later.
    Other things to think about:
    Has she shed since you've had her? (When snakes are going into a shed cycle -- up to a week or 2 before they go blue -- they sometimes refuse food.)
    What are you feeding her - live? f/k? f/t?
    I recommend f/k or f/t for the safety of your snake, especially if she's not in the mood to eat immediately.
    If feeding frozen-thawed, make sure it's good and warm before you feed it. I use a hairdryer to heat up mine. (If you have a tempgun, you can check that it is at least 100F )
    (btw I think one adult mouse isn't enough food for a 4ft boa -- when she starts eating again, you might want to try feeding two.)
    Another thing to consider: the next time she defecates, take the stool to a vet to have it checked for internal parasites. Most are easy to treat.
     
  5. Benn-bmx

    Benn-bmx Banned User

    She has shed once since i had her, and she ate about 2 days after shedding. She always "kills" the food but never eats it. She has not lost any weight due to not eating. I am keeping a very close eye on her. It just reminds me of when I got my baby ball that wouldn't eat for 2 months but now eats like a pig.
     
  6. BlackJack

    BlackJack Subscribed User Premium Member

    When you write she "kills" the food... do you feed live or are you just saying that she constricts it for a while and then lets go and ignores it?
    If she's not losing any weight, I think you can relax. 5 weeks isn't really that long for a snake to fast. Try again in a week or 10 days.
    Let us know when she finally takes something.
    Good luck :)
     
  7. Benn-bmx

    Benn-bmx Banned User

    I'm feeding her f/t; she just constricts then loses interest. Thank you for your help.
     
  8. kcftlaud08

    kcftlaud08 Elite Member

    If she's not sick, she'll eat when she's ready just like the baby ball. This may or may not be helpful, are you feeding her the same type of rat? The reason I ask is because my boa will not eat all white rats. I have had more debates on the impossibility of that from every local pet shop but after I had to throw out about a half dozen, I don't argue anymore. I get them from RodentPro online and specify "No all white". I have not had an issue in 8 feedings. They are also f/t which is my preference. Once it's thoroughly thawed and warm, I just drop it in the tank and cover her up for privacy. Good luck.
     
  9. Benn-bmx

    Benn-bmx Banned User

    I have tried many different colored mice. Could it be that the food is to small?
     
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